Sears Canada posts loss as demand dips for home products
(Reuters) - Department store chain Sears Canada Inc (SCC.TO: Quote) posted a loss in the first quarter compared with a profit last year, as demand for its home products and major appliances fell.
Sears Canada, 51 percent owned by U.S.-based Sears Holdings Corp (SHLD.O: Quote), has been facing increasing competition as U.S. retailers such as Wal-Mart Stores Inc (WMT.N: Quote) expand their Canadian operations and new ones like Target Corp (TGT.N: Quote) enter the country.
Target opened its first Canadian stores in March and plans to have more than 100 by the end of this year.
Sears Canada, which operates 181 company-owned stores, reported a net loss of C$31.2 million ($30.3 million), or 31 Canadian cents per share, compared with a net profit of C$93.1 million, or 91 Canadian cents per share, a year earlier.
Last year's results included a pre-tax gain of C$164.3 million on lease terminations.
Factoring out these gains, the company said its results showed an overall improvement compared with the first quarter last year.
Revenue fell more than 6 percent to C$867.1 million. Sales at established stores, a key measure for retailers, fell 2.6 percent.
The company also said on Wednesday that interim Chief Financial Officer E.J. (Ephraim) Bird will take over the role on a permanent basis.
Bird was appointed interim CFO in March, two months after Sharon Driscoll resigned from the post. Continued...